Cutting / Engraving tools

Anything to do with our PCB / Engraving machine or software

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Cutting / Engraving tools

Post by TDIPower » Mon 23 Sep , 2019 20:45 pm

I'm after some advice on what tools people use and feeds/speeds.

I don't have the PCB engraver but instead use a microrouter pro with the porter cable motor.

A full board ~270x310mm is stuck down with lots of double sided tape to 18mm MDF, left overnight with about 15kg of steel plate on top!
Next day a frame is screwed down onto the MDF just lipping on to the PCB 5mm, this is then mounted in the microrouter.

I've done all the files and have produced many boards (36 at a time from a full sheet, 5 a year) for a Y8 electronics project.
I use a 1mm PCB drill no problem for all the holes.
I use a 30 degree V engraver for text / component location but given I don't have a floating head the depth can in places be a little deep and in others just mark what is required.
For the track cutting I started out with the V cutter but given the variance in board height I could not get a sufficient clearance guarantee for Y8 kids to be able to solder without bridges. So I moved to a 2mm dia slot mill. This worked well as I would machine to 0.3mm depth and have not had any issue with kids and track bridges since. How ever the slot mill I was using died at the start of this year but it had been in stock for ages and have no idea what specs it was. A 2mm dia 4 flute carbide slot mill was bought to replace it and run at the same rates, It's lasted a sheet!

The machine times running at 24k rpm on the router and 4m per min on feeds is about:
30mins Drilling,
30mins V cut.
track cutting is about 15mins.

I have the 1/4 and 6mm collets and a 6 to 3mm reducing collet.

So looking for what to get for milling the slots and suggested speeds/feeds given the depth of cut can't be guaranteed and could be from 0.1 to 0.4mm

Cheers Pete

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